Against a background of social and economic change, four cousins grow up in a small Yorkshire town. Heather and Lesley Atfield are sisters; Pattie and Elisabeth their cousins, the children of three siblings.
The story is divided into sections as the four cousins move through childhood in the 1950s to their late teens and early twenties, learning to come to terms with their relationships with each other, and with the rapidly changing world around them. Family and sex, music and art, love and religion, give meaning to their lives as they reach adulthood. Each cousin faces challenges. Elisabeth must make peace with her past before she can find a way forward; Pattie discovers that independence comes at a price. Heather’s strong religious faith gives her the strength to move beyond the security of her family, while Lesley finds through art confirmation of her abilities and a strengthening of her self-belief.
Published: 15 January 2014